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Wenger keen on France job

Monday 13th May 2002

Arsene Wenger has admitted he would like to become France coach when Roger Lemerre quits in 2004, provided Arsenal have won the Champions' League.

"It all depends on what we have or haven't achieved by then," the Gunners boss explained.

Wenger signed a new Highbury deal this season and saw his team go on to claim the Double. "I have a contract with Arsenal and I will reach the end of that, then we will see," he said. "I can't imagine finishing my life without winning the European Cup."

Lemerre's contract with France ends after the 2004 European Championships in Portugal, when he is expected to call a halt to his six-year reign.

Wenger has often been at odds with the French authorities over their treatment of his players and was especially angry recently when Patrick Vieira and Sylvain Wiltord played a full friendly against Russia ahead of important Premiership fixtures.

However, the way looks clear for Wenger to coach his country as French football federation president Claude Simonet steps down in 2004, which is likely to trigger a major shake-up.

Wenger confirmed that he could not contemplate leaving
Arsenal at present. "You can never say never but I would be greatly surprised. If I had to leave, I would not go anywhere else in England," he said.

"I know exactly where I would go, but I cannot tell you," he added, bringing to mind reported interest from Real Madrid and Barcelona, although Wenger grew up on the France-Germany border and has had contact with Bayern Munich in the past.

Wenger also warned on Monday that the clubs were preparing to make a stand against the national associations. "We want to hit hard and force the rules to be changed," he told L'Equipe.

He then confirmed that Vieira, Wiltord, Thierry Henry and Robert Pires would be around to defend the Double. "All the French players are staying," he declared.

Wenger revealed he has identified two players he wants to bring to the club next season, including a defender, while young French forward Jeremie Aliadiere will be given his chance in the first team. "He has improved enormously," said the coach.


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Wenger would definitely be the best candidate once Lemerre steps down at the end of his contract. I just wish Lemerre to be a little more inspired in his selections, mainly in defence where this clown of Leboeuf has nothing, but absolutely nothing to do there!!!:fero::mad::mad:

The new NT coach has to be someone who would continue in the same path of Jacquet, meaning keep the same group for a long period of time and make sure no prima-donnas or spoilt kids are in the team.

ALLEZ LES BLEUS!:star::star:
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